ERIC Number: ED342005
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Northwest Literature and a Sense of Place.
Simonson, Harold P.
Teachers should help students gain a sense of where they stand. It is difficult to imagine literature without a sense of place--places bridge time and evoke and recreate the past. To compose is to remember, to recreate, and a sense of place begins the composing. Some northwestern U.S. books illustrate the point. In a college literature class, examples of leading works by northwestern authors writing about the Northwest were presented in four categories. Under the first category, "The Western Mountain Man," the best mountain-man novel of all, A. B. Guthrie's "The Big Sky," was studied, along with Don Berry's "Trask." A second category, "Truth in Toil," addressed hardships and failure in the region. Students examined Lois Hudson's "Reapers of the Dust" and Ivan Doig's "This House of Sky." For a third category, "Death and Taxes," concerning northwestern economic warfare, James Welch's "The Death of Jim Loney," was chosen, as was "The Viewless Winds" by Murray Morgan. The fourth category, "Outside and In," dealt with how the exterior and interior worlds interact. Works examined included "Solace of Open Spaces," by Gretel Erlich and "Housekeeping" by Marilynne Robinson. In brief, the course presented a kaleidoscope of the fructifying region some people are lucky enough to call home. (SG)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Place Identity; Regional Literature; United States (Northwest)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of English (81st, Seattle, WA, November 22-27, 1991).